• “Bridget Riley: Paintings from the 1960s and 70s”

    Serpentine Galleries

    “It is a painting’s first merit to be a feast for the eyes,” Delacroix wrote in 1863. Over a century later, his diary entry has become a favorite motto for Bridget Riley. The word “feast” may beg definition, but at the formal level the Serpentine Gallery’s review of thirty-three Rileys from the ’60s and ’70s could certainly be called visual haute cuisine. The recently renovated, pavilion-like gallery, with its symmetrical plan and pleasant balance of natural and artificial light, serves as an ideal setting for her pictures. The first space one enters contains monochromatic work from the early

    Read more
  • Mimmo Paladino

    South London Gallery

    That trusty critic’s tool, the Art Abstracts, tallies over a hundred entries for Mimmo Paladino, but these turn out mostly to be pictorial reproductions; few are substantial articles. The art world evidently likes looking at Paladino’s neoprimitivist paintings and sculptures, but not taking them apart. Maybe the artist’s key apologists have a hand in this. Achille Bonito Oliva’s rote 1982 endorsement of Paladino’s work in terms of the canonical virtues of trans-avantgardism (decentering, fragmentation, “delicate turbulence,” and the like) doesn’t exactly lay the foundations for a more detailed

    Read more
  • “Heart and Soul”

    60 Long Lane

    Sometimes group shows seem to have been the result of some bright young thing saying, “I know, we could do it right here.” Occasionally they are more interesting. Installed in a South London warehouse, “Heart and Soul” included everything from paintings and photographs to sci-fi gizmos, computer-aided images, and flowers—in other words, lots of stuff and plenty of ideas. D.J. Simpson carved into the white-painted, wood-paneled walls, creating designs of overlapping ovals that look like rotating orbits—or what you might get if you trapped Sol LeWitt in a cupboard. Kirsten Berkeley titled her

    Read more